1 Kings 3–4; 2 Chronicles 1; Psalm 72

Solomon's Prayer for Wisdom

vSolomon made a marriage alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt. He took Pharaoh's daughter and brought her into wthe city of David until he had finished xbuilding his own house yand the house of the Lord zand the wall around Jerusalem. aThe people were sacrificing at the high places, however, because no house had yet been built for the name of the Lord.

Solomon bloved the Lord, cwalking in the statutes of David his father, only he sacrificed and made offerings at the high places. And the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, dfor that was the great high place. Solomon used to offer a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. eAt Gibeon fthe Lord appeared to Solomon gin a dream by night, and God said, Ask what I shall give you. And Solomon said, You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant David my father, because hhe walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you. And you have kept for him this great and steadfast love and ihave given him a son to sit on his throne this day. And now, O Lord my God, jyou have made your servant king in place of David my father, kalthough I am but a little child. I do not know lhow to go out or come in. mAnd your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, ntoo many to be numbered or counted for multitude. oGive your servant therefore an understanding mind pto govern your people, that I may qdiscern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?

10 It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. 11 And God said to him, Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, 12 behold, rI now do according to your word. Behold, sI give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you. 13 tI give you also what you have not asked, uboth riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days. 14 And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, vas your father David walked, then wI will lengthen your days.

15 And Solomon xawoke, and behold, it was a dream. Then he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and offered up burnt offerings and peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants.

Solomon's Wisdom

16 Then two prostitutes came to the king yand stood before him. 17 The one woman said, Oh, my lord, this woman and I live in the same house, and I gave birth to a child while she was in the house. 18 Then on the third day after I gave birth, this woman also gave birth. And we were alone. There was no one else with us in the house; only we two were in the house. 19 And this woman's son died in the night, because she lay on him. 20 And she arose at midnight and took my son from beside me, while your servant slept, and laid him at her breast, and laid her dead son at my breast. 21 When I rose in the morning to nurse my child, behold, he was dead. But when I looked at him closely in the morning, behold, he was not the child that I had borne. 22 But the other woman said, No, the living child is mine, and the dead child is yours. The first said, No, the dead child is yours, and the living child is mine. Thus they spoke before the king.

23 Then the king said, The one says, This is my son that is alive, and your son is dead; and the other says, No; but your son is dead, and my son is the living one. 24 And the king said, Bring me a sword. So a sword was brought before the king. 25 And the king said, Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other. 26 Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because zher heart yearned for her son, Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death. But the other said, He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him. 27 Then the king answered and said, Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means put him to death; she is his mother. 28 And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that athe wisdom of God was in him to do justice.

Solomon's Officials

King Solomon was king over all Israel, and these were his high officials: Azariah the son of Zadok was bthe priest; Elihoreph and Ahijah the sons of Shisha were secretaries; cJehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was recorder; dBenaiah the son of Jehoiada was in command of the army; eZadok and Abiathar were priests; Azariah the son of Nathan was over fthe officers; Zabud the son of Nathan was priest and gking's friend; Ahishar was in charge of the palace; and hAdoniram the son of Abda was in charge of ithe forced labor.

Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel, who provided food for the king and his household. Each man had to make provision for one month in the year. These were their names: Ben-hur, in jthe hill country of Ephraim; Ben-deker, in Makaz, Shaalbim, Beth-shemesh, and Elonbeth-hanan; 10 Ben-hesed, in Arubboth (to him belonged Socoh and all the land of Hepher); 11 Ben-abinadab, in all kNaphath-dor (he had Taphath the daughter of Solomon as his wife); 12 Baana the son of Ahilud, in lTaanach, Megiddo, and all lBeth-shean that is beside Zarethan below Jezreel, and from Beth-shean to Abel-meholah, as far as the other side of Jokmeam; 13 Ben-geber, min Ramoth-gilead (he had nthe villages of Jair the son of Manasseh, which are in Gilead, and he had othe region of Argob, which is in Bashan, sixty great cities with walls and bronze bars); 14 Ahinadab the son of Iddo, in Mahanaim; 15 Ahimaaz, in Naphtali (he had taken Basemath the daughter of Solomon as his wife); 16 Baana the son of Hushai, in Asher and Bealoth; 17 Jehoshaphat the son of Paruah, in Issachar; 18 pShimei the son of Ela, in Benjamin; 19 Geber the son of Uri, in the land of Gilead, qthe country of Sihon king of the Amorites and of Og king of Bashan. And there was one governor who was over the land.

Solomon's Wealth and Wisdom

20 Judah and Israel were as many ras the sand by the sea. They ate and drank and were happy. 21 1sSolomon ruled over all the kingdoms from the tEuphrates2 to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt. uThey brought tribute and served Solomon all the days of his life.

22 Solomon's provision for one day was thirty cors3 of fine flour and sixty cors of meal, 23 ten fat oxen, and twenty pasture-fed cattle, a hundred sheep, besides deer, gazelles, roebucks, and fattened fowl. 24 For he had dominion over all the region west of the Euphrates4 from Tiphsah to vGaza, over all the kings west of the Euphrates. wAnd he had peace on all sides around him. 25 And Judah and Israel xlived in safety, yfrom Dan even to Beersheba, zevery man under his vine and under his fig tree, all the days of Solomon. 26 aSolomon also had 40,0005 stalls of horses for his chariots, and 12,000 horsemen. 27 And those officers supplied provisions for King Solomon, and for all who came to King Solomon's table, each one in his month. They let nothing be lacking. 28 Barley also and straw for the horses and bswift steeds they brought to the place where it was required, each according to his duty.

29 cAnd God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure, and breadth of mind dlike the sand on the seashore, 30 so that Solomon's wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all ethe people of the east fand all the wisdom of Egypt. 31 For he was cwiser than all other men, wiser than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, Calcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol, and his fame was in all the surrounding nations. 32 gHe also spoke 3,000 proverbs, hand his songs were 1,005. 33 He spoke of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon to the hyssop that grows out of the wall. He spoke also of beasts, and of birds, and of reptiles, and of fish. 34 And people of all nations came to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and from iall the kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom.


2 Chronicles Illustration

2 Chronicles

Solomon Worships at Gibeon

aSolomon the son of David established himself in his kingdom, band the Lord his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.

Solomon spoke to all Israel, to the ccommanders of thousands and of hundreds, to the judges, and to all the leaders in all Israel, the heads of fathers' houses. And Solomon, and all the assembly with him, went to dthe high place that was at Gibeon, efor fthe tent of meeting of God, which Moses the servant of the Lord had made in the wilderness, was there. g(But David had brought up the ark of God from Kiriath-jearim to the place that David had prepared for it, for he had pitched a tent for it in Jerusalem.) Moreover, hthe bronze altar that iBezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, had made, was there before the tabernacle of the Lord. And Solomon and the assembly jsought it1 out. And Solomon went up there to the bronze altar before the Lord, which was at the tent of meeting, kand offered a thousand burnt offerings on it.

Solomon Prays for Wisdom

lIn that night God appeared to Solomon, and said to him, Ask what I shall give you. And Solomon said to God, You have shown great and steadfast love to David my father, mand have made me king in his place. O Lord God, nlet your word to David my father be now fulfilled, for you have made me king over a people as numerous oas the dust of the earth. 10 Give me now wisdom and knowledge to pgo out and come in before this people, for who can govern this people of yours, which is so great? 11 God answered Solomon, Because this was in your heart, and you have not asked for qpossessions, wealth, honor, or the life of those who hate you, and have not even asked for long life, but have asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself that you may govern my people over whom I have made you king, 12 wisdom and knowledge are granted to you. I will also give you qriches, possessions, and honor, rsuch as none of the kings had who were before you, and none after you shall have the like. 13 So Solomon came from2 the shigh place at Gibeon, from before tthe tent of meeting, to Jerusalem. And he reigned over Israel.

Solomon Given Wealth

14 uSolomon gathered together chariots and horsemen. vHe had 1,400 chariots and 12,000 horsemen, whom he stationed win the chariot cities and with the king in Jerusalem. 15 And the king made silver and gold as common in Jerusalem as stone, and he made cedar as plentiful as the sycamore of the Shephelah. 16 And Solomon's import of horses was from Egypt and Kue, and the king's traders would buy them from Kue for a price. 17 They imported a chariot from Egypt for 600 shekels3 of silver, and a horse for 150. Likewise through them these were exported to all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Syria.


Give the King Your Justice

Of qSolomon.

72  Give the king your rjustice, O God,

and your righteousness to the royal son!

May he sjudge your people with righteousness,

and your poor with justice!

Let the mountains bear tprosperity for the people,

and the hills, in righteousness!

May he defend the cause of the poor of the people,

give deliverance to the children of the needy,

and crush the oppressor!

May they fear you1 while uthe sun endures,

and as long as the moon, vthroughout all generations!

May he be like wrain that falls on xthe mown grass,

like yshowers that water the earth!

In his days may zthe righteous flourish,

and apeace abound, till the moon be no more!

May he have dominion from bsea to sea,

and from bthe River2 to the cends of the earth!

May desert tribes dbow down before him,

and his enemies elick the dust!

10  May the kings of fTarshish and of gthe coastlands

render him htribute;

may the kings of iSheba and jSeba

bring gifts!

11  May all kings kfall down before him,

all nations serve him!

12  For he delivers lthe needy when he calls,

the poor and him who has no helper.

13  He has pity on the weak and the needy,

and saves the lives of the needy.

14  From oppression and violence he redeems their life,

and mprecious is their blood in his sight.

15  Long may he live;

may ngold of Sheba be given to him!

May prayer be made ofor him continually,

and blessings invoked for him all the day!

16  May there be abundance of grain in the land;

on the tops of the mountains may it wave;

may its fruit be like Lebanon;

and may people pblossom in the cities

like the qgrass of the field!

17  rMay his name endure forever,

his fame continue as long as the sun!

sMay people be blessed in him,

tall nations call him blessed!

18  uBlessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,

who alone does vwondrous things.

19  Blessed be his wglorious name forever;

may xthe whole earth be filled with his glory!

yAmen and Amen!

20  zThe prayers of aDavid, the son of Jesse, are ended.